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Tuesday, 23 February 1971

Senator CAVANAGH - I desire to ask a question of the Minister representing the Prime Minister. Perhaps it could be answered by you, Mr President. Does the Minister recall that last year in the Estimates debate I advanced an argument that the Clerk of the Senate should have the same financial standing and prestige as heads of executive departments in having a tax free allowance? Does the Minister recall that my argument was terminated by his statement which appears on page 1917 of the Hansard report? U- states:

T have just been informed that the President has authorised me to say that the question of allowances in the 2 Houses. , is. currently under examination by the Presiding Officers, that is, the President on the one hand arid ' Mr Speaker on the other.

Therefore I ask: What was the result of this examination which was presented as the reason for terminating, at that time my advocacy of justice? Dp. the permanent heads of the executive departments receive an allowance for the expenditures of office at rates of either $1,000 or $1,500 per annum? Do the permanent heads of the Parliamentary departments receive such allowances? If not, why not?

Senator Sir KENNETHANDERSONIn the circumstances 1 ask the honourable senator to put his question on the notice paper. 1 would like to speak to the President about it. In due course I, by leave of the President, or the President himself will respond to the question.

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